Self Soothing: The Ritual Bath

There are times when you are caught up in emotions that you just can’t avoid. There are many ways to get thought this kind of situation one of them being learning to sooth yourself. I’m sure most people have things that they do to sooth themselves in times of crisis. If not, we would never get through an emergency or a tragedy. Now, granted, some of us don’t know how we get through it, but most of us do.

When I talk about self-soothing, I know there will be activities that some of you already use. One that is common, at least among women, is a hot bath. I, however want to ad some exercises to the simple things we do so that they not only sooth us but perhaps decreases over time the need to self-sooth.

First, we are going to gather up some cleansing, soothing herbs. Some we will use for inside, some for putting into the bath to pull impurities out of our bodies.

Here is a list of herbs that you can include in the bath:

As you can see, some of these are going to taste better together than others. I would take some of those and put them together in an airtight jar to make a cleansing tea to enjoy during your ritual bath. Perhaps you could combine some green tea, Cinnamon, Chamomile, a tough of lavender. Make sure your herbs are dried to they won’t go bad in the refrigerator. When you brew your cup, put some honey in it to make it taste better. (Splenda will work for those who should avoid sugar). You can find several cleansing drinks at http://bembu.com/detox-drinks

Mix up an aromatic blend of the other herbs, again dried, and mix in a tiny bit of herbal oils like sandalwood, cinnamon, sage, rosemary, lavender, and/or peppermint and mix them with the herbs like a lightly oiled salad. Place them in an airtight jar and keep those for making a bouquet garni to put into the tub.

When you are ready to prepare your bath, lay out a square piece of cheesecloth and lay about two or three tablespoons of herbs right in the middle. Taking opposite corners crosswise and tie them together tightly. Take the other two corners and tie them together tightly to form a ball that will hold the herbs. Place the bouquet garni into the tub and run some very warm water.

This would be a good time to brew up your tea.

When your tea and the tub are ready, slide yourself right down in, relax, and drink your tea. Some breathing exercises will help you to relax.

My favorite breathing exercise is to inhale slowly until my lungs are full. Hold it for a second and then let it go. As you let go allow you shoulders to relax. This will cause the rest of your body to let go also. As I take in the next breath, I make sure my shoulders stay relaxed. As I exhale, I let them relax even more. I repeat this until I can no longer let go of any tension and my body feels limp. The more you practice this the more relaxation you will achieve.

Now visualize something that you want to let go. It could be a bad habit, a bad way of reacting to someone, a feeling that makes you uncomfortable, anything you want to let go. Imagine that “thing” gathering up in your innermost cells. As they slowly move from one cell to another, they begin to work their way up to the surface of your sin and out of your body. Imagine this thing being rinsed off your body into to cleaning water.

You might want to follow this process again with another “item” of which you want to rid yourself. When you are done with no more that two visualizations, take some herbal soap and gently wash off any remaining negativity. You might choose to use a washcloth, a loofa, or just your hands. Just visualize all of the negativity washing into the water and away from you. As you release the plug, imagine all of the undesirable “stuff” was down the drain and into the sea to be purified.

Dry yourself with a clean fluffy towel and change into the clothes you want to wear for your next activity. You might want to go to bed right now being relaxed and relieved. Otherwise, it would be a good time to start another ritual. You decide.

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